The Time-Turner Series || My favourite cities so far - Part I



I am back with a time-turner after a long, long time. And this time I mean to look back at the cities that have not only lingered in my memories, but also won my heart. At different points in time, I have imagined staying on in these cities and having my permanent home here, for different reasons of course. Though such feelings are transient, the memories are permanent.

I am back with a time-turner after a long, long time. And this time I mean to look back at the cities that have not only lingered in my memories, but also won my heart. At different points in time, I have imagined staying on in these cities and having my permanent home here, for different reasons of course. Though such feelings are transient, the memories are permanent.


The first such city is, of course, Newcastle, my home away from home. A city of several firsts, Newcastle was the place that changed my outlook to a large extent. I more ways than one, this was the place where I grew up. I learned not to judge people. I learned that success means different things to different people. I learned the meaning of freedom.


 The first such city is, of course, Newcastle, my home away from home. A city of several firsts, Newcastle was the place that changed my outlook to a large extent. I more ways than one, this was the place where I grew up. I learned not to judge people. I learned that success means different things to different people. I learned the meaning of freedom.





Newcastle is one of the best cities for students, especially those travelling to Britain from far away places. It is lively and pretty. Newcastle University is one of the best universities for research scholars. It has a rich enough literary scene too. During my MA, this is where I got an opportunity to receive the signed copy of a book. And that too from none other than Nobel Laureate, Kazua Ishiguro. The book was Never Let Me Go (2005).


Newcastle is one of the best cities for students, especially those travelling to Britain from far away places. It is lively and pretty. Newcastle University is one of the best universities for research scholars. It has a rich enough literary scene too. During my MA, this is where I got an opportunity to receive the signed copy of a book. And that too from none other than Nobel Laureate, Kazua Ishiguro. The book was Never Let Me Go (2005).




Newcastle was also the place where I got in the habit of reading poetry. I have been buying poetry books ever since. Most of all I love listening to poets read their poetry. I have myself dabbled a bit in reading my poetry, and I got the courage from this in Newcastle. I submitted my poetry to be read in a festival and was selected. That boosted my confidence. I did a few events here in India too. And have been able to find new respect for poets who are courageous enough to expose their deepest feelings to a crowd of strangers.

Newcastle was also the place where I got in the habit of reading poetry. I have been buying poetry books ever since. Most of all I love listening to poets read their poetry. I have myself dabbled a bit in reading my poetry, and I got the courage from this in Newcastle. I submitted my poetry to be read in a festival and was selected. That boosted my confidence. I did a few events here in India too. And have been able to find new respect for poets who are courageous enough to expose their deepest feelings to a crowd of strangers.




There are a whole lot of other things that I did, or that happened to me for the first time. You can read more here.



Closer home, another city I loved is Candolim in Goa. As opposed to the livelier old Goa and the crowded Anjuna, Candolim is a laid back city by comparison. It is green, especially during the monsoon, has a clean, quiet beach, has the Fort Aguada, and also some really nice places to sample Goan sea food. Yes, you read that right. When we were in Candolim, I remember spending hours on the beach, just looking at the changing colors of the sky, observing the sandpiper birds following and fleeing from the waves, and playing with the crabs. Yes, you read that right.

Closer home, another city I loved is Candolim in Goa. As opposed to the livelier old Goa and the crowded Anjuna, Candolim is a laid back city by comparison. It is green, especially during the monsoon, has a clean, quiet beach, has the Fort Aguada, and also some really nice places to sample Goan sea food. Yes, you read that right. When we were in Candolim, I remember spending hours on the beach, just looking at the changing colors of the sky, observing the sandpiper birds following and fleeing from the waves, and playing with the crabs. Yes, you read that right.

Closer home, another city I loved is Candolim in Goa. As opposed to the livelier old Goa and the crowded Anjuna, Candolim is a laid back city by comparison. It is green, especially during the monsoon, has a clean, quiet beach, has the Fort Aguada, and also some really nice places to sample Goan sea food. Yes, you read that right. When we were in Candolim, I remember spending hours on the beach, just looking at the changing colors of the sky, observing the sandpiper birds following and fleeing from the waves, and playing with the crabs. Yes, you read that right.




I remember that particular dusk, when we were sitting on the beach and the light was rapidly fading. Suddenly we saw a large crab come out from under a rock. It proceeded to examine a stone with its claws. Once done, it scuttled back to the shelter beneath the rock. We threw a small stone close to where it was hiding, and surely enough, the crab scuttled right out and examined the stone we had thrown for it. We continued this game for about half an hour. It was amusing to see the crab indulge us every time. We stopped only when it got too dark.

I remember that particular dusk, when we were sitting on the beach and the light was rapidly fading. Suddenly we saw a large crab come out from under a rock. It proceeded to examine a stone with its claws. Once done, it scuttled back to the shelter beneath the rock. We threw a small stone close to where it was hiding, and surely enough, the crab scuttled right out and examined the stone we had thrown for it. We continued this game for about half an hour. It was amusing to see the crab indulge us every time. We stopped only when it got too dark.


This was also the first time we saw alcohol being sold in a supermarket here in India. The Goans' attitude towards alcohol was refreshing. By simply treating it as normal, they do not allow it to become a menace. You hardly see any hooliganism by the locals. The other way round may happen though.

This was also the first time we saw alcohol being sold in a supermarket here in India. The Goans' attitude towards alcohol was refreshing. By simply treating it as normal, they do not allow it to become a menace. You hardly see any hooliganism by the locals. The other way round may happen though.





I also remember the rented car we drove around the city. This was the first time I was driving a car anywhere outside Delhi. And it was a wonderful empowering feeling. I remember driving on narrow roads amid green fields, also on low hills, to faraway places such as Mangesh temple and old Goa.

 I also remember the rented car we drove around the city. This was the first time I was driving a car anywhere outside Delhi. And it was a wonderful empowering feeling. I remember driving on narrow roads amid green fields, also on low hills, to faraway places such as Mangesh temple and old Goa.

We happened to visit Candolim during the monsoons and I remember a gentle, yet steady, drizzle that accompanied us everywhere. We were very grateful for that too, because when it was not drizzling, it was deadly hot and humid.



Strange as it sounds, I cannot put a finger on the exact reason I loved Jaipur so much. But I have loved it ever since I visited it for the first time in 2004. When I first visited it, it was during the winter and the weather was similar to what we have in Delhi. I remember being overwhelmed by the sight of the hills and the beautiful road running through them. I also remember being awed by the magnificent Amer fort towering above the city.

Strange as it sounds, I cannot put a finger on the exact reason I loved Jaipur so much. But I have loved it ever since I visited it for the first time in 2004. When I first visited it, it was during the winter and the weather was similar to what we have in Delhi. I remember being overwhelmed by the sight of the hills and the beautiful road running through them. I also remember being awed by the magnificent Amer fort towering above the city.

Strange as it sounds, I cannot put a finger on the exact reason I loved Jaipur so much. But I have loved it ever since I visited it for the first time in 2004. When I first visited it, it was during the winter and the weather was similar to what we have in Delhi. I remember being overwhelmed by the sight of the hills and the beautiful road running through them. I also remember being awed by the magnificent Amer fort towering above the city.




I haven't ever really put a lot of thought into Jaipur being the pink city. And that aspect hasn't really ever mattered to me much. During my first visit, I did not visit Chowki Dhani, but I did go to Jantar Mantar. However, when I think about it, it is not the monuments, nor the architecture that makes this city so desirable.

I haven't ever really put a lot of thought into Jaipur being the pink city. And that aspect hasn't really ever mattered to me much. During my first visit, I did not visit Chowki Dhani, but I did go to Jantar Mantar. However, when I think about it, it is not the monuments, nor the architecture that makes this city so desirable.




May be it was the pace of life. Coming from Delhi, Jaipur felt laid back and peaceful. Moreover, our hotel was a simple haveli, but one that served awesome food. It was located right across the Lake Palace and one had to simply cross a road to reach the lake.

May be it was the pace of life. Coming from Delhi, Jaipur felt laid back and peaceful. Moreover, our hotel was a simple haveli, but one that served awesome food. It was located right across the Lake Palace and one had to simply cross a road to reach the lake.




I have to admit though that during my subsequent visits to this city, I have seen the pace of life quickening, the traffic becoming as mad as it is in Delhi. So the magic of Jaipur, I admit has dwindled a little.

Yuksom in Sikkim is, in reality, hardly a city at all. It is a tiny slice of paradise. Green meadows, narrow yet smooth roads, monasteries and temple bells. Ducks and livestock roam free and birds sing and flit in and out of shops and homes.




Yuksom in Sikkim is, in reality, hardly a city at all. It is a tiny slice of paradise. Green meadows, narrow yet smooth roads, monasteries and temple bells. Ducks and livestock roam free and birds sing and flit in and out of shops and homes.

Yuksom in Sikkim is, in reality, hardly a city at all. It is a tiny slice of paradise. Green meadows, narrow yet smooth roads, monasteries and temple bells. Ducks and livestock roam free and birds sing and flit in and out of shops and homes.




One can roam in silence in the grounds of tucked away Buddhist temples or sit by the side of  peaceful lakes in the company of fish and birds. This is the place to be if you are looking to spend time with yourself. This city is by far the prettiest that I have ever seen. The prospect of spending a few more days was really inviting. We were only there for a day trip.

One can roam in silence in the grounds of tucked away Buddhist temples or sit by the side of  peaceful lakes in the company of fish and birds. This is the place to be if you are looking to spend time with yourself. This city is by far the prettiest that I have ever seen. The prospect of spending a few more days was really inviting. We were only there for a day trip.

I have so many more cities to talk about. Will share more in the second part. Till then, take care and keep travelling.

If you liked this post and found it helpful, I would request you to follow these things when traveling -


  1. Manage your waste well and don’t litter
  2. Use dustbins. Tell us if you went to a place and found it hard to locate a dustbin.
  3. Avoid bottle waters in hills. Usually you get clean water in hills and water bottles create lot of mess in our ecosystem.
  4. Say big no to plastic and avoid those unhealthy snacks packed in plastic bags. Rather buy fruits.
  5. Don't play loud blaring music in forests of jungle camps. You are a guest in that ecosystem and disturbing the locals (humans and animals) is not polite

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